Guardian, Thursday, January 29, 2009 2:15 PM
Newcastle United's already troubled season hit more problems Wednesday when Michael Owen
and Joey Barton
serious injuries in the team's 2-1 defeat at Manchester City, while manager Joe Kinnear
said that the club's owner, Mike
, was suffering hard from the economic downturn and might be struggling to pay the players. Meanwhile, goalkeeper Shay Given
will likely leave
for Manchester City before the Feb. 2 transfer deadline.
"Mike has lost £2 billion [$2.86 billion] in his own business because of the credit crunch," Kinnear said. "It's not
easy for him. He's paying the wages, just about. But it's in the [financial] records, you just have to look."
Owen suffered a broken ankle that will put him out for at least six to
eight weeks, while Barton's injury looked like a broken metatarsal, which Kinnear called that "that dreaded word again, and the docs are saying 10 weeks." The loss left Newcastle five places off the
bottom and without a win in their last seven matches.
Kinnear said that it was tough to look at a team like Tottenham Hotspur offering huge sums for various players, and said he
would "love to go and spend millions like that and I wish I was in the position to do so. But you can see why a lot of big names out there didn't have the arsehole to take this job. You can see why
so many people bottled it."
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